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Amazon wants to use vacant mall stores as fulfillment centers: Rpt

The On the Move panel discuss the report that Amazon is negotiating with Simon Property Group to use vacant mall stores as fulfillment centers.

Video Transcript

JULIE HYMAN: One of those stocks we've already talked about, and that's Amazon. And we're gonna turn to that one next. The other stock, though, we haven't talked as much about, and that's Simon Property Group.

There is a report that Amazon is in talks with Simon Property to take over some spaces that have been vacated by some of the big department store owners to use as fulfillment centers.

Dan Howley, I can't help but think of sort of the macabre imagery of Amazon sort of picking over the corpses of these malls. But, I mean, Amazon needs more space.

DAN HOWLEY: Yeah, and it's interesting. You know, some of the reports I was reading about this, it makes perfect sense for Amazon-- Amazon only, really-- for these kinds of flagship anchor stores and malls to become fulfillment centers.

Specifically because malls are everywhere in America, and we had them so close to us because we wanted to get shopping done very quickly. And so for Amazon, it's basically the reverse. They'll be able to send the items to us a lot faster if they're able to take over these anchor stores.

I think one of the issues that's gonna come up is how much do the other stores, the smaller shops inside malls, appreciate having a giant Amazon fulfillment center, and what does that even do for those kinds of stores.

I mean, look, I would normally go in-- you know, when I would go to malls in the before time, we'll call it-- to Macy's or something and get a blazer or something like that or a pair of shoes. And then I would wander around.

You know, maybe go to a GameStop or get Wendy's in the food court and then take off. But you just don't do that anymore. There's not a lot of reason to hit the mall when you just have everything one click away, outside of the COVID reality that we're living in right now.

But I think a lot of the smaller shops are gonna look at Amazon and say, well, look, you've taken our business. We don't want to, you know, be next to you and have you just actively sitting there as a reminder of our own impending demise.

So I think it's gonna be really interesting to see how some of the companies that, you know, work with Simon for the properties will react to this.

JULIE HYMAN: I love that flashback, Dan. It takes me back to my days of working at Cinnabon in the Owings Mills Mall.